What does it mean to be a True Girl?

Recent events have me thinking about what makes this program so special, and trying to put into words the culture we have here. Part of it is our staff, but a large part is the type of player we attract, and accept into the program. In such a turbulent time, I want every True player across the country to know how much they are loved, appreciated, and that they have any number of people that they could reach out to if they ever needed anything.

Without further ado, here is a list of a few traits that make a True girl special and set her apart from the rest. We look for these in players. Compare yourself to the following list – you may not be strong in every area, but we work to foster each of these in you and will remain doing so as long as you wish to work on them.

True Girl is STRONG hearted.

There will be off days. There will be setbacks. There may even be coaches that aren’t a great fit for you along the way – be it in youth, in high school, in college – but don’t let anyone take your passion for the sport. It’s something you love doing – we’re the same way – but it’s not always smooth sailing. How you get back up after getting knocked down makes you the player you are, makes your team what it is, and makes us the program we are.

True Girl is PATIENT & KIND to her teammates.

We’ve all been new at something, and we all remember how scary it was. Encouraging your teammate when she drops a pass in practice, versus rolling your eyes, will go a long way to giving her the courage to continue working. Before you know it, your whole team is better, you’re all closer friends, and you’re winning championships. A little effort goes a long way. Never judge a teammate by what club she came from or what school she goes to; all you need to know is that now you are teammates, and you have each other’s backs on and off the field.

True Girl is BRAVE in the face of uncertainty.

Tryouts are scary; team placement is sometimes even worse. Regardless of where you land, you owe it to yourself and your teammates to practice and play your hardest as that is the best way to find success. If you leave everything on the field, you cannot be disappointed by the outcome. On any given day a team can win or lose. A loss because of a lack of skill or execution can be fixed; a loss because of lack of heart or grit is harder to deal with. Each one of you needs to be brave, which can also inspire your teammates, and change the outcome of the game. A fear of failure will keep you from finding success.

True Girl is HUMBLE on and off the field.

Put your team first. Demonstrate to your coaches, directors, and college coaches alike why you were chosen to be on this team by making selfless decisions with the ball, with your positive attitude, and with your non-stop work ethic. You do not score goals for glory, but for success of your team, and you make the right play regardless of who actually scores the goal. If your parents ever say they’ll pay you for every goal you score, ask them instead to celebrate every interception, every contested roundball that you come up with, every little team victory, because that is what being part of a team is all about.

True Girl is RELENTLESS in striving for her goals.

You don’t let anything stand in your way – you find other ways to prevail. Your season got canceled – you ran, you trained, you worked. You came to True because you knew we would train you – it has always been our promise to you. It is your job to be willing to accept the coaching and develop skills that you wouldn’t learn otherwise. We will push you to be better, but you are the driving force and your trajectory in the sport is only capped by your willingness to work.

True Girl is SMART about the decisions she makes, and is RESPONSIBLE for herself.

MISTAKES and DECISIONS are two very different things. To put it in terms of the game; dropping a pass is a mistake. Choosing to not chase after the girl that picked up your missed pass is a decision. True girls accept the consequences of their decisions. Don’t post crude pictures or hateful things on your social media accounts – you will regret it later. See this article for an example of a consequence: Marquette Player Loses Scholarship

Recognize that you are almost always on display. Not only do you represent True, but you represent YOU! Take pride in your identity. How do you treat others in public? Are you aware of your surroundings? How do you behave around your parents versus your friends? Treat every teammate/official/competitor/coach/spectator/parent/person with respect. Colleges are looking for the whole package, and posting hateful or spiteful things online is a great way to prove you’re not it.

Make sure you research what you repost – if you repost it, you’re willing to stand by whatever it is that post says. This being the season of virtual recruiting, know that coaches are watching your accounts.

Social media DOs:

  • Post pictures of family, friends, pets, and hobbies
  • Share that dad joke that made you laugh 
  • Make a separate lacrosse recruiting account for videos and highlights
  • Use your social media audience to affect change for the better
  • Be genuine

Social media DON’Ts:

  • Affiliate with groups that exclude others based on race/ethnicity/gender/orientation/etc
  • Repost something that you don’t understand
  • Repost something that has an unclear origin
  • Post middle fingers, offensive, or provocative photos
  • Exclude teammates from your photos

We live in this place where we are given certain freedoms – speech being one of them. Know what you’re saying before you say it, understand the implications behind what you say, and know that depending on what it is, it may have an adverse affect on your future.

We as your coaches, directors, and confidants want the best for you all. We see you as these strong, resilient, brave young women and know that together we can do so much more than as individuals. Be good to each other. 

Krista Crandall

COVID-19 Weekly Update

A note from the Director:
Hello True Families!
This is a difficult time for all of us, and mentally challenging in particular. I hope you all use this time to reconnect with your families, but also to reconnect with yourselves. With the future weeks in question, it gives us an opportunity to think about what it is that we want for ourselves beyond that. Not just the athletes, but parents, you as well. Those of you that have forgotten how creative you are, how can you weave your creativity back into your daily life moving forward? Those of you that “haven’t had the ‘me’ time to work out” or take some extra time for some self-care, how can you structure everything moving forward so that you can. If organizing your family for the Spring/Summer and beyond would be beneficial, be glad we have time to do so. This ‘pause’ in our lives is a chance for us to re-evaluate what it is we are trying to achieve in life. Athletes – what is it that you want for your future? Is this time particularly hard for you because there is no lacrosse? Listen to yourself. If you are sad or struggling with preseason training being canceled, and the Spring season in question, I think you have an answer there.
For me, personally, this break in training and working from home is a chance to re-evaluate what it is we do in the office every day. Since starting True MN Girls, my mission has always been to offer the best possible training and personal development to girls of all skill levels. When we get into the nitty-gritty of everyday planning and implementing, it’s sometimes hard to pick my head up and see the network that we’re creating and the true gift this program is to me.

In evaluating the program it’s obvious to me that we have assembled the best Staff in the state; we have the most caring group of coaches and directors in Minnesota, and I’m so proud to call each one of them a True Coach.
I’m proud that our program has started offering training at such a variety of levels. Limiting girls’ access to training/development does nothing to propel the sport forward, but only increases the skill disparity of those in club and those not.
I’m excited about the advances in recruiting Heather has been working so hard on, the steps the girls have taken to invest their time in their own process, and the step-by-step approach we’re taking to help break it down. Side note – we’re looking into online recruiting seminar options during this office closure.

Some things I’m taking this time to work on moving forward is a more comprehensive assessment to be able to give players and families so they understand their own level of play in regards to some top recruits. Sometimes feedback is hard to hear, but transparency is important to us, and it’s also important that each girl understands we are here to meet them on their level and lift them up.
I would like to have a detailed list of events/clinics/add-ons that parents can expect in the next year. We’re all excited about what we have cooking, and we can’t wait to finalize, and share it with all of you.
Lastly, you’ll notice our website getting a much needed facelift – this is typically one of the first things to fall off of my list, and I’m excited to have the time to dedicate to such an important part of our program. Don’t be surprised if you see some familiar faces populating the pages. 🙂

Summer Planning Statement:
We are moving forward in all our current plans for Summer – we are finalizing/filling rosters and we are committed to bringing you a Summer season regardless of what Spring brings. IF anything is canceled, we will communicate it to you and find a replacement event. Worst case scenario is a season extension, so know that we will bring you the value we’ve promised: we are committed to you, your development, and your recruitment goals, and we’re with you all the way.


Private Lessons:
We are not able to continue with any private lessons at this time. We are not available to come to your backyard, or local park. The precautions we, and the company, have taken may seem extreme, but safety and health of each one of our employees, and each of you is of the utmost importance to us. Any outstanding lessons will be completed post-shutdown. At this time we are not setting dates and schedules as the status is ever-changing. Thank you for understanding.

Facility Use/Rental:
The Facility is closed until further notice – we appreciate everyone’s enthusiasm for the sport, but we are not able to open it for individual use. We’re not happy about it either, and we miss you all on a daily basis. We are working diligently to ensure the cleanliness of the True facility by hiring a professional cleaning company to sanitize and disinfect the entire building for the safety of all of our players, parents and staff.
This would include:
  • Disinfecting all touchpoints (tables, chairs, door knobs, ect..)
  • All common areas thoroughly cleaned and disinfected (including restrooms)
  • All areas wiped down and vacuuming and mopping of all floor surfaces
  • All turf space will be fully vacuumed as well as disinfected
Disinfectants (non-toxic) will be used from the list published by the CDC last week that contains products recommended to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

For those of you with access to a wall:

Heather’s Wall Ball Sessions

Notes:

-Change skills every 2 minutes
-Play music! Keep it fun!
-Break when necessary and do foot skill work or any other skill (not wrist intensive)
-Do each skill with both hands – right/left
-Objective is to touch the ball 1,000 times in 1 hour!

Series 1

  • One-handed top hand only RIGHT
  • One-handed top hand only LEFT
  • One handed – bottom of stick (end cap) RIGHT
  • One handed- bottom of stick (end cap) LEFT
  • Throw at seam where floor meets wall to pop ball high in air – catch at highest point- catch one-handed RIGHT
  • Throw at seam where floor meets wall to pop ball high in air – catch at highest point- catch one-handed LEFT

Series 2

  • Quick stick RIGHT
  • Quick stick LEFT
  • Reverse catch (throw right keep right hand up and catch on left side) RIGHT
  • Reverse catch (throw left keep left hand up and catch on right side) LEFT
  • Reverse stick RIGHT
  • Reverse stick LEFT
  • Throw Right – switch hands after the pass
  • Throw Left –switch hands after the pass

Series 3  – In Pairs (SIBLINGS ONLY RIGHT NOW!!)

  • Player on right passes with outside hand to partner – RIGHT
  • Player on left passes with outside hand to partner – LEFT
  • Pump fake LEFT
  • Pump fame RIGHT
  • Riser (low to high) RIGHT
  • Riser (low to high) LEF
  • Bounce pass RIGHT
  • Bounce pass LEFT
  • Switch positions and run through again

Series 4 – Shuttle Lines Wall Ball –  3-4 to a line (PLEASE FORGO THIS OPTION UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE!)

  • All RIGHT to right– pass to second player in line (waterfall style)
  • All LEFT to left– pass to second player in line
  • Bounce pass RIGHT/LEFT
  • Quick stick RIGHT/LEFT
  • Catch RIGHT, Throw LEFT
  • Catch LEFT, Throw RIGHT

Series 5 – Advanced

  • Behind the Back
  • Around the World
  • How many RIGHTS in 1 minute
  • How many LEFTS in 1 minute
  • Catch throw all reverse pocket (back of stick) RIGHT/LEFT
  • Throw RIGHT/LEFT – emphasis stick protection stance (shoulder-shoulder-stick as if wall is defender  – moving feet the whole time – this is a work out!

Here’s a video from our Maryland director for an at-home workout!


Thank you for your continued support, and we look forward to seeing you all on the other side of this. Stay healthy.

Yours in life and lax,
Krista​ Crandall

2020 True – A Letter from the Director

This is a letter to each family who is a part of True Lacrosse Minnesota Girls.

Hello True Families,

I wanted to thank you all for such a great 2019 – I have been reflecting on where we started back in March 2016 and can hardly believe that we’ve done so much in just a few years. I didn’t know what to expect when Crandall and I agreed to work with True, but we have been blessed with the opportunity to build a club based on training and development. We have been blessed by each of you, joining our lacrosse family, and allowing us to be a part of your lives. Each girl in the program adds to the culture, the energy, and brings new light and new challenges to our daily lives, and I don’t know what we’d be doing without each of them.

2020 brings the graduation of our first class of girls we’ve had since youth – so maybe I’m extra sentimental. I used to run this club on top of a full-time job, and the day I became a full-time employee for it (Jan 1, 2017) was an exciting, albeit, scary moment. I remember when a mom reached out to me that Summer and explained I needed to fix X-Y-Z… I was in the middle of a tournament and didn’t really even have time for that phone call, but I knew she wasn’t wrong, rapid growth had made my program bigger than myself – enter Julie Crouse.

Julie was that mom – I don’t think she’d mind me telling you. I got her phone call and said, “You’re right. Want a job?” Julie has done so much for the program – her attention to detail and communication is a large part of the reason I made through that first year. Some of you are in frequent contact with her over travel logistics, etc. – but don’t even know what it’s like without her.

That Summer, our tryouts blew up – word had spread, girls had jumped levels of skill and had surpassed teammates, people wanted to be a part of it, and we nearly doubled in the number of teams we had – this brought the need for another employee – enter Madii Maas.

Madii has been instrumental from day 1 – ask her sometime about her hiring process, it’s quite the story. Going from 1-2 full-time employees was a risky move for the company, but something I knew needed to happen, and having Madii for the past couple years has been grounding. I, admittedly, am an abstract thinker, and a dreamer, and can easily get lost in an idea – Madii has helped me implement over the the past 2 years and I’m glad it has been her with me – happy anniversary, Madii.

Monday marks a significant moment for us here at True – the implementation of our 3rd full-time employee for the girls program – Heather Pierson. Take a second to congratulate her when you see her at a practice. Heather has been working part-time as our recruiting director and has already done so much for the program and those that she has worked with; we’re very excited to have her joining us on a daily basis. Her energy and passion for the sport and this program will help solidify the vision we’ve always had.

Our 2020 promise to you all:

To the parents: this program is great, but can always improve. We are always searching for ways to better the program, and please know that we always have your athletes in mind when we have a decision to make. I’m sure, in 2020 there will be something you’re frustrated with – please communicate with us. Know that we do everything for a reason, and we’re happy to hear from you. We realize all that you put into this too, and we appreciate it. When we can help clarify something, we will – don’t hesitate to ask.

To the players: each of you is talented, but can always improve. Our mission is and has always been to meet each of you where you are and help you move forward. We’re playing an infinite game of let us make you the best you can be – in 2020, join us. Whatever has been stopping you from switching hands, trying that new stick trick, taking that shot, etc. – let it go. You WILL mess up, and that’s ok. If you choose to fight us or refuse to try something, you only delay your own goals. At some point, they will pass you by. Stop before that happens; instead, put your energy into listening and learning, trying and achieving. We’ll be here for you along the way. Feel free to ask questions and fail multiple times, we’ll still give you direction and love you just the same. Realize also, our job is never done – just because you finally nailed a BTB doesn’t mean we’re done coaching you. We will increase the difficulty or add a skill. When you’re at True, you’re working on some aspect of your game. Don’t come just to play, come to succeed at something.

Happy New Year, Everyone. Welcome back, and check your TeamSnap schedules.

I’m so excited to see what 2020 has in store for each and every one of you – let’s work together to make it great.

Krista Crandall

#truegirlsplaylax

True Minnesota Girls Director